Thursday, May 14, 2009

Knit, Knit, and ReKnit

It's snowing outside. Can you believe it? I'm distracting myself with some good knitting.

Ever since the latest Drops patterns came out online, I've been coveting one sweater in particular. Unfortunately I have been on a yarn diet for a while, as I try to knit my stash down to a reasonable level, so I couldn't buy the yarn I need for the cardigan.

Then my birthday came. I got some cash (which will help me pay off my extravagant loom purchase) and some yarny gift certificates. Still waiting for yarn in the mail from one of them, but the other one was for my LYS, so I spent it forthwith, on the yarn I needed for this cardi. Instead of the Drops Fabel sock yarn the pattern calls for (they just didn't have any nice colours of that yarn) I went with some slightly pricier Supersocke yarn in a colour that is so me. You will also notice some alpaca for the edging of the sweater, and a Norah Gaughan pattern book and row counter bracelet in that pile of swag. It was a good trip to the store.

Having finished my socks in record time, I started swatching for the sweater. I did a generous swatch with US4s and frogged it, then did another generous swatch with US5s and got gauge. I frogged the second gauge swatch, cast on the sleeve and knit four or five inches, and realized that the pattern suffers from a common problem with large sized sweaters: the sleeves are voluminous well beyond necessary. I find that it is often the case with sweaters that are in multiple sizes -- the designer adds inches to the sleeve along with inches to the bust/body of the sweater, and big girls like me end up with sleeves that are unreasonably flappy (albeit good at camouflaging jiggly upper arms.) So I frogged the beginning of the sleeve, and cast on one last time with 14 fewer stitches, which seems to give me a more reasonable sleeve. Since the cardigan is knit in only two pieces, the right half from side-to-side and the left half from bottom front to bottom back, it will be more tricky than usual to make alterations, but I think I'm up for it.